Minister Dimitrov participates in a ministerial summit at the WTM exhibition in London

08 November 2022

It is important to achieve sustainability in three main pillars of tourism – environmental, social and economic. They are the cornerstones of the Bulgarian vision for the future development of the sector and I am convinced that we will find many committed international partners and friends in our efforts to achieve our goals. This is what the Minister of Tourism Ilin Dimitrov, PhD, said in his address to the participants of the ministerial meeting in the framework of the London exhibition, organized under the banner of the World Tourism Organization of the United Nations and the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC).

The summit was held on the second day of the World Travel Market (WTM) international travel trade show in London, UK.

“Instead of striving to “return to normal” it is time to rethink the goals, business models, value chains of the tourism industry in a more pragmatic and systematic approach,” Minister Dimitrov said. He highlighted Bulgaria’s rich tourism opportunities: “We are here to present the possibilities of our country, its hospitality, traditions. Digitisation, innovation, social responsibility remain the main priorities for the future tourism product. Our country should be an example of a sustainable tourism model”. He further noted that we should pay attention to every tourist, both those in 5-star hotels and those in smaller categories, because they use the same amount of resources.

A highlight of the speech by Zurab Pololikashvili, Secretary General of the World Tourism Organisation, was what the tourism sector of tomorrow should look like. According to him, the crises have affected the sector a lot, but in the future, we need to work on human capital, especially for the youth. Pololikashvili noted that new technologies need to be developed in the sector and tourism needs to be taught in schools. It is in educational institutions that we can teach the youth to protect resources, the Secretary General said.

Julia Simpson, President and CEO of the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), addressed the participants saying that tourism needs new leaders and investment. “The sector must face up to its climate action responsibilities while generating growth to drive economic development. To provide opportunities for all, the sector must embrace new voices and new ideas,” Simpson said. 

Before the start of the meeting, Minister Dimitrov held informal talks with the Secretary General of the World Tourism Organisation Zurab Pololikashvili and Nikolina Brnjac, Minister of Sport and Tourism of Croatia. Minister Dimitrov extended an invitation to his Croatian counterpart to visit Bulgaria for a meeting between the businesses of the two countries.

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